One of the founding ideas behind Cruise Aficionados is that cruising is something best enjoyed when you know something about the things you experience ahead of time. Likewise, when you come home, you are able to dive into learning about the things you ate, drank, experienced and made part of your cruise. When dining aboard ship I am always impressed with the presentation of meals but still find myself wondering how to judge it in comparison to who it might be done elsewhere. How do I, how would you know what to expect from a meal?

I invited Chef Justen Riley to share some insights on a random selection from Royal Caribbean’s past menus from cruises I’ve taken.

Chef Riley brings you Beef Wellington:

“Traditional beef wellington is wrapped in a flaky pastry , on the inside of the pastry there will be a filet that is wrapped in bacon and around that will be a mushroom mixture of either button or crimini most times. In modern cooking it is normal to find beef wellington in a loaf style that is normally made up of a shell of puff pastry with a mixture of either beef tips or extra bits of tender beef sections that have been combined with sliced or diced mushrooms and bacon, this style is normally found in a more relaxed environment such as a self serve buffet or served buffet with the attending chef slicing into it as a wow factor of sorts.

At a plated meal normally it will be a single serving done in a traditional fashion and served with either a thickened jus or a beef gravy made from stock, the gravy should complement the pastry and meat inside instead of overwhelming it to the point of tasting nothing but the gravy. If it overwhelms the main part of the dish then likely the meat inside is scraps from other cuts that were not as desirable but needed to be put to use rather than wasted.”

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